Frequently Asked Questions
Most frequent questions and answers
What are the symptoms of coronavirus?
Symptoms of coronavirus include, sneezing, coughing, shortness of breath and fever. If you have these symptoms, it doesn’t necessarily mean you have coronavirus. You may just have a cold or the flu.
Is there a cure for coronavirus?
Currently there is no cure for coronavirus as it is a new virus. It may take up to a year for a vaccine to be created.
How do you diagnose coronavirus?
The health protection team will take a few samples to see if you have the virus. This includes: mucus from your nose, throat or lungs, a blood sample and a stool sample. You may be isolated from other people until they confirm whether you’re affected or not.
Does coronavirus only affect the elderly?
No, coronavirus can affect people of all ages. It is more likely for those with weaker immune systems, or pre-existing illnesses (like heart disease or diabetes) to contract the virus. Keep washing your hands with soap and water to avoid symptoms.
A relative has just come back from an affected country. Should I stay away from them?
If your relative has just come back from China, Italy or other affected areas, you don’t necessarily need to stay away from them. If you’re in the UK call 111 to find out what precautions you can take.
What can I do to prevent spreading the virus?
1. Wash your hands every time you: get home or into work, before and after you eat or handle food and after you blow your nose or cough.
2. Remember to wash your hands for at least 20 seconds.
3. Don’t touch your face.
Should I work from home, do I avoid festivals and other events?
It is not necessary to work from home, or take your child out of school unless you have been advised to by a medical professional. Some events are being cancelled as a precaution but if you wish to go to an event it is still possible to do so. This is subject to change.
I’m pregnant and may have come in contact with someone with coronavirus. What should I do?
Seek medical attention as soon as possible. Anyone based in the UK should call 111 in the first instance.
Coronavirus face mask
There is no proof that face masks work against coronavirus.
Can pets spread coronavirus?
Yes pets can contract coronavirus, so make sure to wash your hands before and after touching your pet.
What is classified as "close contact"?
Being in close contact means that you’ve either: spoken face-to-face for a few minutes minimum, living in the same house, come into contact with their body fluids, been coughed on, been within 2 metres of the person for more than 15 minutes.
How should I self-isolate myself if I’m affected?
Do not go to work or school, do not use public transport or taxis, ask friends/family/delivery drivers to drop off food and other supplies for you, but do not have visitors. Do this for up to 14 days. If symptoms persist, contact your local medical services.
What is coronavirus?
Coronaviruses (CoV) are a large family of viruses that cause illness ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases such as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS-CoV) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS-CoV). This virus is able to pass between animals and humans, meaning that you should protect your pets just as much as your family too.
I am about to travel to another country, what do I need to know?
Research the country you’re about to visit beforehand, you will find articles from that country’s government on what places you should/not visit and details of emergency numbers to call whilst you’re there. It is advised that you don’t travel during this period unless it is mandatory that you do so.